Lambickx | Vanberg & DeWulf

LambickxLambickx
BA SCORE
3.88/5
411 Ratings
LambickxLambickx
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Vanberg & DeWulf
New York, United States
belgianexperts.com

Style: Lambic - Unblended

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Unlike Gueuze this is a blend of lambics all drawn from the same year. As such there is minimal carbonation.

Added by Jason on 08-11-2011

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#8,362
Reviews:
103
Ratings:
411
pDev:
11.86%
Bros Score:
3.92
 
 
Wants:
23
Gots:
77
Trade:
6
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 411 |  Reviews: 103
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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

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3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

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3/5  rDev -22.7%

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4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

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4/5  rDev +3.1%

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2.25/5  rDev -42%

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3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of MatthewPlus
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml cork and caged green bottle poured into a tulip.
6.75% ABV, Brew Year 2008, Bottle Year 2011

A - I've heard mice farts louder than the carbonation escape from the cork pull. Lambickx pours almost still with loose bubbles forming a ring around the top of the faintly hazed golden beer.

S - Waves of heavenly ripe sour funk permeate every pore of the nostrils with tart citrus rind and damp sweat sock leaving oak and biting acidity on the back end covering up what little "beer" character one might pull from this lambic; unique and classic!

T - Grainy pale malts and soda cracker barely manages to poke through the overtly funky flavor of Lambickx, traipsing across the tongue with dry oak, gym socks, and a tart finish of lemon oil.

M - Notably lower in carbonation during the pour, this single year blend of lambics has a slick feel with just a trickle of bubbles dancing down the throat as this bone dry beer finishes with a combination of tart acidity and downright sour power.

O - Vanberg and DeWulf's Lambickx is a unique drinking experience that distances itself from the other sour beers that grace the shelves. Layers of funky complexity burrow deep into this beer with tart and sour components with descriptors that would make the uninitiated sour drinker question why anyone would consume such a "beer". This blended lambic is not, for many reasons, a training wheel sour but it's a damn good beer for those who know what to expect.

 1,455 characters

Photo of biegaman
3.62/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

On-tap at Blue Monk in Buffalo, NY.

Lambickx came served in a wine glass and, indeed, has the visual sophistication to suit it; a lambent amber-peach tone with a pearl white crowning, this looks spectacular. Its haziness is a natural consequence of the fact that it was brewed and subsequently stuffed into a barrel in 2011 and not released until 2013; two years in oak will inevitably lead to cloudiness.

Like an animal that hisses or growls before attacking, Lambics give you fair warming: the aroma is expressively, definitively sour. This particular bouquet is a little more restrained than many but one can still make out acidic and tart notes of lemon and grapefruit. There's also a strong cork flavour (if a wine had this smell you'd surely assume it was cork taint and send it back).

Lambickx may have a couple extra letters in its name, but it's definitely missing a few things: sweetness nearly edges out sourness, there's little barrel character, and the acidity is considerably muted. Often when swallowing a Lambic one imagines the enamel stripping from their teeth and a little sting at the back of the throat - this experience is nothing like that.

The flavour has elements of dried grass, peaches, and sour apples set to a 'barnyard-y' backdrop but again it falls on the palate a little flat. There's not enough sour lemon juice or oak barrel characteristics for my tastes. This one has a notably abundance of sweet wheat malt and only a superficial amount of the style's trademark 'funkiness'. It actually tastes remarkably like a buttery California Chardonnay, sharing the oaky, tart apple, and lightly acidic qualities.

I like the idea behind Lambickx: each year Vanberg & DeWul (the importers responsible for it) select a single batch of lambic - as opposed to a blend of lambics of several different ages - from a different producer, the idea being that each individual cask matures and tastes different and reflects the specific characteristics of the vintage, the brewer's tastes, the "terroir", etc...

The problem with this one, however, is that Brouwerij DeTroch - maker of 'Chapeau', some of the most pathetic, intensely sweetened and artificial tasting "lambics" ever to see market - is not exactly known for "complexity, brilliance and drinking excellence". This particular lambic is half-hearted - nothing more - but I do see the potential for some great releases to come.

 2,412 characters

Photo of Unchi
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of Docrock
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of rrski198
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of VincentFrey
3.21/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pour / Appearance: Next to no carbonation. Cork came out with no pop or hiss, and even a heavy pour yield only a few millimeters of head that quickly disappeared. Otherwise a very beautiful, straw colored beer. Not much to really comment on here, as it hits its marks in spades.

Aroma: Very nice, subtle belgian yeast funk that somehow dominates while letting peaks of acidity and pilsen malt through. Not a complicated aroma, but a nice one. Again, hits the mark.

Taste: Here's where I have an issue: without carb, and I know it's traditional, it's like drinking a white wine. Yes there are very nice upfront funk notes and some hints of acidity, but there is way too much cheap white wine oak note dominating the beer. It did everything else right, but it is entirely one dimensional here. I'm very disappointed.

Overall: Not worth the price, and very disappointing. Maybe I got a bad bottle, but I don't think so. There is plenty of funk if you're looking for an example of yeast activity, but there's not much beer behind it.

Bottom Line: Don't bother unless you gotta try every lambic.

 1,094 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.69/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

not as good as i wanted this to be, the 2010-11 vintage in oak and chestnut. it pours a still apple juice color, no bubbles at all. hazy, but sunny and bright still. the nose is really funky, authentic lambic smelling with lactic tartness and high acid content. lots of citrus too, smells wild and strong, it fills the room with its funky aromatics. the taste is a little more subtle, sour only in the finish, with rustic wheat malt and lemon juice making up the bulk of the taste. as it warms a yellow grapefruit complex really comes out. fleshy grapefruit is the exact flavor, its uncanny. i have a real problem with the lack of carbonation. i know its one vintage of lambic and is supposed to be this way, but it makes it hard to get into it, i want sour beer like this to resonate and sing, this just falls short of that by quite a bit, its almost dead on the palate. i am glad i got to try this, but at 23 bucks or so per bottle, it is absurdly overpriced. i know there are a number of vintages and barrels released of this, and others may exhibit other characteristics, but at this price i am unlikely to continue experimenting with lambickx.

edit: just enjoyed the private domain edition, with some port or red wine and chestnut wood among three blended wood treatments from what i understand. it suffers the same lack of carbonation and life, but the depth really is advanced well beyond the on i had from the bottle reviewed above. all sorts of musty funky weirdness and old medical stuff, like an abandoned senior citizens home first aid kit or something. all in a good way. get the private domain if you can!

edit: french oak edition 2011-2013 was somewhere in between the first few i have reviewed here. its totally still which turns me off in lambic, but the wood profile is incredible, and there is a cool funk, minerals, almost iodine and medicinal with all the wood that really is quite developed and distinct. i would recommend this release for sure, its drinking great right now despite the stillness!

 2,021 characters

Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled in 2012. Pours lightly hazy pale golden straw color with no head or lacing. Some light streaming carbonation from the glass . Aromas of big tart apple, lemon, pear, grape, leather, wood, clove, pepper, hay, straw, grass, wheat, musty funk, white wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of wood and yeast notes; with good strength. Feels drier and more oak/wood forward than most lambics I have had. Taste of tart green apple, grape, lemon, leather, clove, pepper, wood, hay, straw, grass, wheat, musty funk, white wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy/spicy tartness on the finish; with lingering notes of green apple, grape, lemon, leather, wood, clove, pepper, hay, straw, wheat, musty funk, white wine, light vinegar, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity and balance of wood and yeast flavors; with a moderately dry finish with no cloying flavors. Minimal carbonation and medium bodied; with a smooth, earthy, and slightly acidic mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice lambic style. Very dry with nice complexity and balance of wood and yeast flavors; and very smooth to sip on with no carbonation and light acidity. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,389 characters

Photo of metter98
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is hazy dark pale yellow in color. It poured with only delicate lacing on the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of oak are present in the nose along with notes of sourness.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has a little bit of acidity with hints of tangerines.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a low amount of carbonation.
O: This unblended lambic was neither too acidic nor too sour so it wasn't that difficult to drink.

 543 characters

Photo of smithj4
4.21/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tom10101
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Lambickx from Vanberg & DeWulf
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 411 ratings
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